5 reasons your cat won’t use the litterbox

The cat’s relationship with the litterbox is more complex than many cat parents realize. We usually think the litterbox is just a place where our cat eliminates. For the cat though, the relationship to the litterbox is more complex than just an elimination spot. It’s important to look at your cat’s litterbox set-up from his perspective to make sure it meets his needs and not just our convenience.

1. Possible health problems

If your cat suddenly starts going outside the litterbox, you should first talk to your veterinarian. If the cat feels any discomfort using the litterbox, then the cat will associate the discomfort with the place where it first appeared and avoid it at all costs. Any variation in your cat’s behavior, including a change in litter box habits, should be reported to your veterinarian immediately.


2. The cat is stressed

Cats are sensitive to change, and even the smallest disruptions to their routines can have a major impact on their behavior Relocating, a visitor/new member of the family or friction with other domestic pets within the house may also cause the cat to avoid, spray, or mark the litter box. It is all because of stress.


3. Wrong location

When looking for the perfect spot for your cat’s litter, take into consideration a remote place in your house, with no high traffic, no washing machine in the nearby. If you have a senior cat, keep in mind that it might not be easy for them to climb, so make sure the litterbox is easy to access.


4. The litterbox is dirty

A dirty litter box is a primary reason a cat won’t use it. Litter boxes must be scooped at least once a day to remove all clumped litter and fecal matter. At the same time, check litter levels and be sure there is enough litter at all times.


5. It’s either the box or the litter

Cats may react to the feeling that the litter sand gives to their paws. If you want to change the litter sand transition slowly over 7 to 10 days by adding small amounts of the new litter to the old until you have switched over completely. When it comes to your cat’s litterbox, bigger is always better. Your cat should be able to step inside, turn around, scratch and squat without touching the sides of the box. Some cats prefer the privacy of covered boxes, while others need open space to feel comfortable.